History: First Israeli-Ethiopian To Join Air Force as Pilot

IAF Lt. Y.

Another victory for diversity in Israeli society – an Ethiopian-Israeli will become an IAF pilot.

By: United with Israel Staff

The Israel Air Force (IAF) will set another record in Israeli society when Lt. Y. becomes its first combat navigator of Ethiopian origin, completing the prestigious pilots’ course on Thursday, IDF Radio reported.

After the three-year course, the most prestigious and intensive in the IDF, Lt. Y will serve as a navigator on IAF jets, the IDF Spokesperson’s Unit confirmed to The Jerusalem Post.

Former Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman tweeted earlier this week that “the IDF is the melting pot of Israeli society, and the success of Lt. Y. proves this once again. I wish him and his friends to soar as high as possible – and most importantly, to always return safely.”

Rachel, Y.’s mother, told IDF Radio on Wednesday that she felt great pride, but could not understand what all the excitement was about.

“The boy grew up here and was educated here. This means that if you give all the youth of the community the opportunity and support then there will be no problem. It’s just a matter of investment. All in all, he did what everyone else does. There are no pilots in Ethiopia?” she said.

In related news, the IAF made history after IAF Commander Major General Amikam Norkin decided on Tuesday to promote Major A, the first Druze fighter pilot in the IAF, to serve as the commander of the school for the operational leadership of the IAF.

He will be promoted to lieutenant colonel and will be the first Druze air force fighter of this rank.

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Source: United with Israel